- "From this moment and ever afterward, you and this blade are inextricably bound. Soul Reaver and reaver of souls, your destinies are intertwined. By destroying the sword, you have liberated it from its corporeal prison, and restored it to its true form - a wraith blade, its energy unbound. No longer a physical blade, it can only manifest itself in the material realm when your strength is fully restored. Once manifest, it will sustain you."
- ―Elder God[src]
The Wraith Blade was the spiritual form of the Soul Reaver, created when Kain shattered the physical blade against Raziel. Liberated from its prison but still trapped in the form of the Soul Reaver blade, the Soul devouring wraith entity within bound itself to Raziel becoming his symbiotic weapon. Paradoxically, the wraith blade was ultimately revealed to be the future of Raziel himself, as he discovered he was destined to be consumed by an earlier version of the physical Reaver blade to originally create the Soul Reaver.
Throughout his journey, Raziel was able to imbue the wraith blade with many different elemental enhancements and ultimately used the final one, the Spirit Reaver, to disperse the wraith blade into Kain - freeing himself from centuries of torment, whilst healing Kain of the corruption that had plagued him since birth.
The Wraith Blade first appeared as a weapon in Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver. Raziel first gained the blade at a confrontation with Kain at the Sanctuary of the Clans when Kain shattered the Soul Reaver on Raziel, liberating the wraith blade from its physical shell and causing it to bind to Raziel as his symbiotic weapon. The blade was ever-present as the only weapon available in the Spectral Realm, whereas in the Material Realm, the blade was more fragile, appearing only when Raziel's Health coil was full. When manifest, the blade sustained Raziel's form, preventing the usual drain on his health, however a single strike from an enemy would disperse the blade until Raziel topped up his health. Whilst in the Material Realm, the blade could be also used to open specially marked Sealed doors. In combat, the Wraith blade was arguably the most powerful weapon in the game, able to reduce enemies to a stunned state within a few strikes and equipped with a charged finishing strike that could obliterate the bodies of enemies. Once the Telekinetic force projectile relic was gained, the Wraith Blade was also enhanced to fire Reaver bolts, which could similarly leave an enemy in a stunned state after relatively few impacts. After gaining the Wraith Blade, Raziel could also imbue the Reaver with a powerful (optional) enhancement - the Fire Reaver - which caused further damage to enemies, often causing them to ignite in flames, either with strikes or Force bolts. [Soul Reaver][Soul Reaver/6][Soul Reaver manual (UK)][Soul Reaver manual (US)][Soul Reaver strategy guide (Prima)]
Raziel's use of the Wraith Blade continued into Soul Reaver 2, with the blade initially sharing much of the same mechanics as previously seen, with the blade ever-present as the only weapon available in the Spectral Realm and only available in the Material Realm, when Raziel's Health coil was full. As before, the blade was more powerful than standard weapons in combat, able to reduce enemies to a stunned state within a few strikes or Reaver bolts and equipped with a (uncharged) finishing strike that could obliterate the bodies of enemies. An early encounter with Moebius's Staff disabled the blade, preventing Raziel from using the blade in the Material Realm until he reached the Sanctuary Cathedral area of the Sarafan Stronghold. Shortly after it met with its former self, still imprisoned in the Soul Reaver and with this encounter the Wraith blade was fully aroused, enabling Raziel to summon it at will regardless of his health, but at a cost - the blade would grow more powerful with each strike until it filled the Reaver bar and the Wraith Blade turned its hunger on Raziel, draining his Health coil; with the souls of enemies killed by the blade automatically consumed and no longer used to restore Raziel's health. Throughout the game, Raziel would uncover several forges where he was able to imbue the blade with temporary elemental power (Dark, Light, Air and Fire) - with each elemental association able to be re-imbued at attuned Reaver fonts (see Enhancements). The Wraith Blade (and its various enhancements) could also be used to unlock special Sealed doors.[Soul Reaver 2][Soul Reaver 2/1][Soul Reaver 2/1][Soul Reaver 2/Miscellaneous][Soul Reaver 2 manual][Soul Reaver 2 strategy guide (Prima)]
In Legacy of Kain: Defiance Raziel was armed with the Wraith Blade as his only weapon:- though it was divided between the virtually identical Spectral and Material variants, each used in the appropriate realm. As the only weapon available, the Wraith Blade was a vital part of combat technique, with Raziel able to feed The Reaver, filling his Reaver charge and enabling the use of Charged attacks and Reaver spells. Throughout the game the Wraith Blade could be imbued with several permanent elemental enhancements (the Dark, Light, Fire, Air, Water, Earth and all-powerful Spirit Reaver) - each of which could be imbued at sealed forges within the Vampire Citadel and once forged could be reimbued at will. Each enhancement had specific applications for combat or puzzles and varying Charged Attacks and Reaver Spells. The Wraith Blade (and its various enhancements) could also be used to unlock special Sealed doors.[Defiance][Defiance manual][Defiance strategy guide]
The Blade is VanquishedEdit
The origins of the Wraith Blade lie in the creation of the Soul Reaver blade itself, as due to ancient sorcery the physical Reaver blade consumed the soul devouring wraith Raziel[Soul Reaver 2/Epilogue][Defiance/13]. Trapped for centuries inside the blade, Raziel became increasingly ravenous and deranged, giving the Soul Reaver a reputation as a powerful weapon which fed on the souls of those struck by it.[Blood Omen/8][Soul Reaver/6]
See Also Main Article : Soul Reaver
Kain retained possession of the Soul Reaver through the events of Soul Reaver and when Raziel returned from his execution as a Wraith, he confronted Kain at the Sanctuary of the Clans. At the end of the battle, Kain overcame Raziel and drew the Reaver, preparing to strike Raziel down, but unexpectedly the blade shattered on Raziel, liberating the Soul-devouring spirit within the blade from its corporeal prison and returning the blade to its true form - a wraith blade. The Blade was initially destroyed because of a paradox, as the Reaver could not devour its own soul. Weakened after his battle with Kain, Raziel was forced to return to the Spectral Realm, where he found the Wraith Blade which bound itself to him becoming his symbiotic weapon.[Soul Reaver/6]
Once gained, the wraith blade was an incredibly powerful weapon that could be used in both Spectral and Material versions. The blade could only manifest in the Material Realm when Raziel's Health coil was full and it would maintain his health unless he was injured, in which case the blade would retreat to the spectral plane until his health was refilled[Soul Reaver][Soul Reaver/6][Soul Reaver manual (US)][Soul Reaver manual (UK)][Soul Reaver strategy guide (Prima)].
Raziel would continue to use the Reaver as a weapon through his journey in this era. He used the blade to unlock the sealed outer entrance to the Silenced Cathedral[Soul Reaver/6][Soul Reaver/7] and later upgraded the weapon with the Telekinetic force projectile relic, enabling it to fire 'Reaver Bolts.[Soul Reaver/9] The wraith blade could also optionally be endowed with the elemental Fire Reaver to incinerate enemies[Soul Reaver/Miscellaneous]. Raziel continued to wield the blade into his final encounter with Kain in the Chronoplast, where he followed Kain into the past.[Soul Reaver/15]
A Sentient ParasiteEdit
When Raziel arrived in the history preceding Blood Omen, the Wraith Blade took on a new significance; firstly Moebius' Staff demonstrated the power to disable the wraith blade,[Soul Reaver 2/1] then shortly after arriving in the chapel of the Sarafan Stronghold, Raziel found the earlier physical version of the blade that was wielded by William the Just in the battle with Kain and broken from that battle. The wraith blade was able to manifest itself and leeched Raziel's energy to restore the physical blade. From this point on Raziel was able to manifest the blade at will, but it had become a "sentient parasite competing for control" that would turn its hunger on Raziel if it became over-aroused. Raziel threatened Moebius with the conjoined blades but ended up sparing him, due to revelations about Moebius' service of the Elder God (unknowingly narrowly avoiding a Soul Reaver Paradox).[Soul Reaver 2/1]
Soon after meeting Kain at the Pillars of Nosgoth Raziel was able to use the wraith blade to unlock a large sealed door in a passageway hidden behind the Pillars, which was decorated with an image of the similar looking Ancient vampires;[Soul Reaver 2/Miscellaneous] this door led to the Subterranean Ruins and Subterranean Pillars Chamber and Raziel's first glimpses of murals of Vampire history. All around the Soul Reaver blade was depicted with reverence as were the images of the vampire champion; which given his ownership of the wraith blade and vaguely Ancient Vampire appearance seemed to apply to Raziel himself.[Soul Reaver 2/2]
Entering the Swamp, Raziel was able to uncover the Dark Forge and imbue the wraith blade with elemental darkness - forging the Dark Reaver. He was then able to use the Dark Reaver to return to the enter the Light Forge in the Great Southern Lake and completing its puzzle, gain the Light Reaver, which enabled him to activate the Light Crystals and re-enter the Sarafan Stronghold[Soul Reaver 2/Miscellaneous]. Soon after Raziel encountered the physical Reaver in William's Chapel again, as Kain picked it up and gave it to Raziel, forcing the wraith blade to manifest. Here the wraith blade was able to exert its will once again, forcing Raziel's hand to advance on Kain. Raziel was able to fight the will of the wraith blade and divert the blade by inches, igniting a paradox and changing history.[Soul Reaver 2/5] Following this change, Raziel abandoned the Physical Reaver and used the wraith blade to force Moebius to send him backwards in time, but instead he was tricked and sent forward to the Era following Blood Omen.[Soul Reaver 2/5]
A Terrible RevelationEdit
In the Demon-infested Post-Blood Omen era, Raziel was able to open a passage into the mountains and found the location of the Air Forge. Solving the puzzle of the forge his was able to imbue the Air Reaver, using it to blast open the cracked doorway to an abandoned Time Streaming Chamber in the Swamp and activate it, propelling him into Nosgoth's early history.[Soul Reaver 2/Miscellaneous] In this era, Raziel was able to enter Janos Audron's Retreat and, finding the mountain hollow, he proceeded to use the Dark, Light and Air Reavers to negotiate the Mountain to reach Janos' Balcony, but did not manifest the Wraith Blade when he met Janos. Janos offered Raziel the physical Reaver blade, but curiously Raziel experienced none of the usual displacement associated with the Soul Reaver Paradox. When the Sarafan commanders attacked, Janos teleported Raziel to the nearby Fire Forge,[Soul Reaver 2/8] where Raziel was able to gain the Fire Reaver and return to Janos' chamber, just in time to witness his human self and his brothers murder Janos and steal both the Heart of Darkness and The Reaver.[Soul Reaver 2/9]
Raziel chased the Sarafan back to the stronghold and once again met Moebius, along with Malek, in a room with the physical Reaver - and with Moebius' Staff once again disabling the Wraith Blade, Raziel was forced to use the physical Reaver as a weapon.[Soul Reaver 2/9] Diverted a different route through the Stronghold, Raziel killed the major Sarafan commanders[Soul Reaver 2/9][Soul Reaver 2/Epilogue] and after killing his human self, the Wraith Blade manifested and for the first time since they were bound, it left Raziel, instead embracing its former self. The Wraith Blade turned the Reaver on Raziel and impaled him with it, and it was then that Raziel realized the truth about the Wraith Blade - that it was his future self, explaining why there had been no sense of displacement when he met the Reaver in Janos' Aerie; it was empty and thus not a Soul Reaver Paradox. As Raziel was consumed by the blade, Kain revealed himself and using some careful timing, he was able to ignite another paradox, changing history once again and sparing Raziel from his fate. However in the Spectral Realm, Raziel realized that the Wraith Blade was still present - Kain has merely postponed his destiny.[Soul Reaver 2/Epilogue]
A Constant ReminderEdit
Returned to the Underworld, Raziel was taunted about his destiny by the Elder God, but was eventually able to escape to the Material Realm, deprived of the means to imbue his elemental enhancements.[Defiance/2] Finding himself in the Cemetery in the events of Blood Omen, Raziel noticed some much older ruins caught his attention and he was able to use them to Warp to the sealed chambers within the Vampire Citadel where he was able to enter the Light and Dark forges, gaining more permanent versions of the Light and Dark Reavers in turn. Using these enhancements he was able to leave the Cemetery and embark towards the Pillars.[Defiance/4]
In hidden chambers near the Pillars of Nosgoth, Raziel was able to permanently imbue the Wraith Blade with the Fire Reaver by absorbing the souls of the original Original Guardian of Conflict and Nature guardians in the sealed Fire Forge, enabling him to proceed to the Pillars, and after learning of Vorador's involvement with the Reaver Blade's creation, ask Ariel about his whereabouts. To enter the way to Vorador's mansion, he had to find another chamber that warped him to the sealed Air Forge and absorbing the souls of the Original Guardian of the Mind and Dimension Guardians gained the permanent Air Reaver, which enabled him to continue.[Defiance/6]
At Vorador's Mansion Raziel was able to teleport to the sealed Water Forge and after consuming the souls of the States and Death Guardians, he was able to gain the Water Reaver, which along with the Fire Reaver, enabled him to enter the vault at the end of Vorador's garden where Vorador was hidden.[Defiance/8] After his discussion with Vorador, Raziel traveled to Avernus where he discovered the Cathedral built on ruins that warp him to the Earth Forge, where taking in the souls of the Time and Energy Guardians, he gained the Earth Reaver and was able to use it to enter the Avernus Catacombs and find out many secrets, particularly regarding the two champions of prophecy both he and Kain have observed in murals.[Defiance/10]
The Final Baptism of the bladeEditWhen Raziel returned to the Cathedral, he was armed with the Wraith Blade for his confrontation with Kain and the supposed champions battle - with it confirmed that the Wraith Blade was the only weapon that could kill Kain. During the battle Raziel began to be absorbed into the Reaver carried by Kain and in desperation, he ripped out Kain's Heart - the Heart of Darkness - using only his Claws.[Defiance/11] Returning to Vorador's Mansion, Raziel reinserted the Heart into Janos, but it was the Wraith Blade that ultimately brought Janos back to life. With Raziel demanding answers of Janos, he was manifested the Wraith Blade - illustrating the amount Janos had misunderstood the prophecies. Amazed, Janos sent Raziel to the final forge in the Vampire Citadel, the Spirit Forge, where he fought off the Elder God's interference and using all of the elemental enhancements, was able to activate the forge and absorb the souls of all the Balance Guardians (represented by Ariel) and gain the purifying Spirit Reaver.[Defiance/12]
The Spirit Reaver demonstrated itself as an all-powerful and devastating weapon, but even with its power, Raziel was unable to save Janos from the Possession of the Hylden Lord, who stole Janos body as part of a Hylden conspiracy. Returned to the Elder God in the Spirit Forge, Raziel realized the truth - that he was both champions and Kain fulfilled an entirely different messianic role in the prophecies, that of the Scion of Balance. When Kain returned to the Spirit Forge after his apparent death, killing a resurrected Moebius, Raziel repeated the act with the wraith blade in the Spectral Realm and realized that the Spirit Reaver was powerful enough to purify Moebius's sight and allow him to see the Elder God. Fulfilling his destiny, Raziel possessed the corpse of Moebius and sacrificed himself to become trapped in the Reaver Blade, but at the same time he dispersed the Spirit Reaver into Kain, cleansing him of the Corruption that had plagued him since birth and allowing him for the first time to see the true enemy - The Elder God - as well as providing him with the prophesied weapon of the Scion of Balance - The Soul Reaver - that was capable of harming the Elder.[Defiance/13]
Throughout Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver, Soul Reaver 2 and Legacy of Kain: Defiance it has been possible for Raziel to imbue the Wraith Blade with several elemental enhancements. Most of the planned enhancements were originally cut from Soul Reaver, however subsequent titles included more enhancements for the blade.
Legacy of Kain: Soul ReaverEdit
Though only the Fire Reaver made it into the finished game a series of other Reaver enhancements (related to the methods of killing vampires in that game) were planned but cut before release. Each enhancement would have been gained from small specialized forge (similar to the Fire Forge in the finished release) and once enhanced, the elemental affinity could be regained by exposing the Reaver to the appropriate element.
- Water Reaver (Soul Reaver)
- Stone Reaver
- Sound Reaver
- Sunlight Reaver
- Spirit Reaver (Soul Reaver)
- Ariel Reaver
- Kain Reaver
- Amplified Reaver
Soul Reaver 2Edit
The enhancements included for Soul Reaver 2 were based on more traditional elements than those used in Soul Reaver. As before each enhancement had a (large and complicated) individual forge that could be used to imbue the enhancement and once forged, the element could be re-imbued at Reaver fonts throughout Nosgoth. Once again several Reaver enhancements were planned but not included in the final game, with their respective forges removed (though ruins of the Spirit Forge remain).
- Spectral Reaver (unmentioned)
- Material Reaver (unmentioned)
- Dark Reaver (Soul Reaver 2)
- Light Reaver (Soul Reaver 2)
- Air Reaver (Soul Reaver 2)
- Fire Reaver (Soul Reaver 2)
Legacy of Kain: DefianceEdit
In Defiance the Reavers list from previous games was finally completed. Each was imbued at a specific forge in the Vampire Citadel and once forged could be selected again at any time.
- Spectral Reaver (default Spectral Realm manifestation)
- Material Reaver (default Material Realm manifestation)
- Light Reaver (Defiance)
- Dark Reaver (Defiance)
- Fire Reaver (Defiance)
- Air Reaver (Defiance)
- Water Reaver (Defiance)
- Earth Reaver (Defiance)
- Spirit Reaver (Defiance)
- In the alpha versions of Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver the wraith blade did not have the charged finishing move seen in the final game, although some elemental Reaver enhancements had attacks that had whose effects were able to kill similarly quickly. The alpha also gave the player access to Reaver bolts - but not Telekinetic force projectiles - upon gaining the Wraith Blade. Early versions of Soul Reaver 2 actually kept the charged attack but this was eventually discarded for that game.
- Only the Soul Reaver blade or the wraith blade can create the Soul Reaver Paradoxes, The Blood Reaver does not.
- In Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver, The Wraith Blade had different effects for the Spectral Realm and the Material Realm, being green in Spectral and blue in Material. By the time of Defiance, they were considered to be separate Reavers - The Material Reaver and The Spectral Reaver. This was probably to aid the new Plane Shift mechanic, which was now no longer on a ring menu but under the Reaver list.[Defiance][Defiance strategy guide]
- The Wraith Blade in Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver was originally intended to be a "light saber-like" version of the Reaver, complete with ghostly crossguard and a hilt that Raziel grips, but due to the technical limitations of the time, the effect was changed into a simpler design. Defiance would return to the original design of the Wraith Blade.[Defiance]
- The Wraith blade is depicted in the Legacy of Kain: Defiance comic.[Defiance comic]
- Soul Reaver
- Soul Reaver Earned Abilities at Dark Chronicle (by Marie Tryhorn).
- Soul Reaver 2 Elemental Reavers atDark Chronicle (by Marie Tryhorn).
- Defiance - Raziel's Reavers at Dark Chronicle (by Marie Tryhorn).
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 SR1 The Elemental Reavers at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln).
- ↑ SR1 - The Ariel Reaver at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln).
- ↑ SR1 - The Amplified Reaver at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln).
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 SR2 Deleted Elemental Reavers at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln).
- ↑ SR1 The Deleted Armoury at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln).